Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Betfair & ATR..

I'm about to have a rant about the two above organisations. But before I start I have to stress that I didnt lose any money because of this and I bet to my own accord, I sit down at the computer and I know what to expect with them you know, thats why the stakes are so small on the horses.

Today we have three ATR/SIS meetings currently going on, Newcastle, Exeter and Southwell, and ATR is about 6, 7 or 8 seconds behind judging by when Betfair open the market for in running.

First point on Betfair, well we all know what theyre like, greedy bastards. But my gripe is that they open the market for IR 6/7/8 seconds before the stalls open but they DO NOT close the market 6/7/8 seconds before it finishes. They suspend crossing the line or maybe a length before it. Common sense or logic would suggest that if it opens 7 seconds before, it would close 7 seconds before, it doesnt. How many bets get matched at 1.01 or 1000 when the race is over?

Second point on ATR, those that will remember 'ATR extra' will know they can have pictures at up to just 1 second behind. Those that watch RUK will know they usually (but not every day) run one second or so behind TurfTV (like SIS but for RUK tracks), so it CAN be done, ATR dont HAVE to be so far behind. But instead they "put on" 6/7/8 seconds so people will keep paying for SIS.

I know theres track players and exchange shops (I go to one some days), and more power to those people, you know if they go out of the way to do it good luck to them. But the powers in racing always keep banging on about this 'level playing field' but yet every day we get this absolute shite going on..

Betfair suspend 6 seconds before they leave the stalls but not 6 seconds before the line - more commission for them.

ATR have a 6/7/8 delay added on to the pictures - more money for them. SIS supply ATR with the pictures, "race reading skills are key," they say, so why do they need the delay? I understand ATR is a channel to show racing and isnt directly to be used for in running purposes, why then does it say "Live" on the ATR screen when it clearly isnt. Why do they talk about in running prices.

The most annoying thing, the thing that gets me, is that they CAN make it fairer for the casual home player if they wanted to, but they dont give monkeys about the casual home player do they.

I read Cheltenham are thinking of plans to move to Saturday in the next few years, a bit of gloss has already been taken off by the 4 day festival rather than the 3 days (those were the days!), so now they want to move it to Saturday because crowds dipped. Well-fooking-duh. Of course they dipped you already cocked up with the extra day including lesser graded races at the meeting which shouldnt be there in the first place. "Racing for change" very catchy slogan isnt it, pity they havent got a brain between them. Gold Cup day on the Friday is always a sell out last time I looked, but they want to change it.

"Lets change the odds to decimals and get more people racing." Oh what an idea, charge €60 in as well while your at it, €25 per meeting isnt enough already. €15 for food, €3 for a race card. Dont worry though, once it goes to decimals people will pay. Seriously FFS?

"Lets have more meetings and more all weather." Because thats just so exciting for new punters isnt it. Did you know that Dundalk is free in nearly every second Friday night? How can they run a business if its free in, because they get so much money from bookmakers for staging a meeting on a Friday night that they wave the admission fee. They do. Friday is pay day, all weather racing, pubs and bookies for most people, the racecourse does be empty.

Its not like the Racing Post will flag up anything sure just sponsor them or take out a page advert and you can say what you like sure or stop them telling the truth. Try bet €1,000 with Boylesports, you wont get on, but they sponsor the 'going guide' on ATR, lets interview Leon Blanche and he can tell everyone how they took €20,000 at 6/1 in the shops this morning. Oh yeah, and the next bloke went in with €50, got offered €20 at the price and the rest at SP, a coffee and a custard cream.

The common thing in racing is to blame 'crooked' trainers and jockeys, theyre not even half the problem FFS. Lets blame the "cheaters," lets blame the ground, lets blame the weather, lets blame the recession. Its all bollocks. Lets be realistic and blame the people in charge for once.

And they wonder why the games dying..

(Apologies for the rant).

Anyway, P&L today, nothing doing, nothing decent on.

Horse Racing: -€2.05 Total P&L: -€2.05


  1. excellent post, excellent.

  2. Thank you, I feel a whole load better now its off my chest! Haha.

  3. Was 8sec today imo, nothing short of a disgrace

  4. its the sneakiness and underhandness of it that pisses me...

  5. Ya, its the way they do it without saying anything or dismissing it when someone brings it up.

    That delay today a farce, and they'd never say a word, you wouldnt know unless you'd guess yourself.

  6. always feels better to get it off your chest :)

  7. Hey mate, there are on course reps for the start of the race but I agree and have asked why not for the finish unless there is a photograph/stewards, the commission on 1.01 isn't why its done, it is because we cannot wholeheartedly trust the on course reps to give us exact finishing times. Betfair are about 1/2 seconds ahead of SIS on the off from hearing the on course commentator say 'they're off'.

    As for ATR, they are a poor service when it comes to live racing, my team and I send over market movers every morning and they often make their own ones up!


  8. Cant trust them on the finish but can trust them on the start..!?

  9. Great post Stephen.


  10. Haha, we have them on the phone so we can hear the commentator say off. The problem is the commentator don't say when the horses cross the line at the finish, its more of a running o and he wins by a cosy few lengths, how can u say when he is over the line?

  11. But sure the comm mightnt say off until after a few yards. Des would be slow enough saying it over here, he'll let them go a stride before saying it type of thing.. Tommo would probably do the same.

    The market stays open when the race has actually finished, loads of bets must be matched even in the split second. Basically that reason means it opens "live" but doesnt finish "live!"

  12. Bloody great post mate...

    Sickening what bf do.

  13. Yer I agree, although in Ireland we only use SIS pictures for the whole lot, due to connection issues with phones etc. You're probably right something does need doing about it, I'm not here to defend Betfair for the way things are done. Just saying what are the alternatives? Its the same with goals at football matches.

    It is the reason there is a 1 second delay on in running bets, that is the time difference between us and the SIS pictures, so when we suspend to our pictures the in running punters cannot get their bets on cos it takes a second to get matched, whereas suspension is instant.

    Betfair are constantly doing latency testing to test the delays between live and our pictures, and the delay on in running bets is changed accordingly.

  14. Haha, fair enough you know, I know you'll stick up for them sure you work for them.

    But here connection issues with phones from England to Ireland..! Haha!

    Basically theyre making up excuses to leave it open, if they cant trust the reps for the finish, they cant trust them for the start IMO.

  15. What annoys me Stephen is attheraces think they are heros because they point out the non triers sitting quiet out the back to flag them up but yet they are robbing punters blind every day of the week. They never say there is a delay and as you say they say it's live when it isn't.

  16. Yer, of course I gotta have some respect as I do the job day in day out. And I guess there are other underlying factors that account for why we do it. The 1.01 on course punters count for a whole lot of the trade, and sure I suppose they can never lose if they are ahead of the market.

    Key is not to get involved in the later stages of races, get the quickest pictures possible and get the in running price, but always green out for small profit. I know you love doing that Stephen ;)

    Not much more I can say, no doubt there are people that get more out of racing than the general folk, if I was allowed to bet at work maybe I could do something but I'm not haha, thats life I guess!